The way email is delivered around the world has undergone a seismic shift this month (February 2024), similar to what happens when someone's at your front door.
Imagine hearing a knock; you approach, peer through the peephole, and decide whether to open the door based on the visitor's appearance.
Until recently, email services were quite lenient, opening the door to almost anyone, occasionally directing the more suspicious characters (read: obvious spam) to the side entrance to be dealt with later.
However, a game-changing collaboration between email giants Google and Yahoo has rewritten the rules: Now, every email must don a "uniform" adorned with your domain's name to gain entry. Any email lacking this uniform is deemed an unwelcome intruder, (think: sinister person in ninja outfit and face mask), destined to be turned away.
This isn't just an intriguing analogy; it's the stark reality of today's email landscape.
Um, Yes, Behaving For Google And Yahoo Is Very Very Important
Google and Yahoo's stringent new authentication requirements signal a clear message: Email must now wear its own domain name's "uniform", or risk being barred from the inboxes of nearly half the world's email users.
According to figures we've seen, Gmail alone accounts for about 1.5 billion of the 5 billion email addresses in existence, and Yahoo covers another 250 million. Let that sink in a bit.
Add to this Apple's impending enforcement of similar rules, and the urgency becomes even clearer.
Then remember that Outlook, with its half-billion users, and other email providers are destined to follow suit or risk becoming outcasts where spam rules the roost.
Why This Matters
The essence of these changes boils down to a concerted effort to combat spam and enhance email security.
By requiring emails to be authenticated through mechanisms like DKIM (DomainKeys Identified Mail), SPF (Sender Policy Framework), and DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance), email providers are tightening the security net.
Emails that fail to adhere to these authentication standards, will be blocked and you'll start getting messages like this:
These measures ensure that an email truly comes from its claimed domain, has not been tampered with in transit, and adheres to the domain owner's policy on email authentication.
The Technical Nitty-Gritty
Implementing custom DKIM involves adding a TXT record to your domain's DNS, a crucial step in affirming your emails' legitimacy.
Similarly, custom SPF authentication strengthens your domain's reputation, aligning with your DMARC policy to further verify your emails' authenticity.
DMARC itself allows you to monitor and specify how unauthenticated emails should be handled, enhancing your control over your domain's email security.
Talked About Marketing's Solution
We usually keep our emails as "product-free zones" but this topic, this issue, is too crucial for us to not be frank.
Your emails not getting through WILL COST YOU MONEY.
In response, I have worked with our web and IT lead, David Murring, in crafing some tailored services to ensure your business remains connected and secure.
Our Email Health Check, is designed to audit your domain, update your authentication records, and align your email practices with the new global standards.
However, if you want to maintain the highest level of email deliverability and security, our Email Guardian plan offers ongoing monitoring and maintenance for a nominal fee.
This plan ensures your email settings remain optimised, safeguarding your domain against the evolving landscape of email security requirements.
The Bottom Line
The email world is changing, and the stakes are high.
Without the proper "uniform" — that is, the correct authentication protocols — your emails risk being turned away at the door, unseen by nearly half of your potential audience.
The collaboration between Google and Yahoo, soon to be adopted by Apple and likely followed by Outlook, marks a pivotal moment in email communication.
Talked About Marketing is here to guide you through these changes.
By equipping your emails with the necessary "uniform" through our Email Health Check and ongoing support with the Email Guardian plan, we ensure your messages continue to reach their intended recipients.
In this new era of email security, being prepared is not just an advantage; it's a necessity.
As we navigate this transition together, remember that the goal is a safer, more secure digital environment for all.
With our expertise and your readiness to adapt, we can turn this challenge into an opportunity, ensuring your emails not only reach the inbox but do so with the trust and confidence of both the sender and the recipient firmly intact.